PORTSMOUTH Jessica LaFleur, bariatric program director at Portsmouth Regional Hospital, said for some people, particularly those diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, diet and exercise can make a huge difference in their daily lives.
People who are type 1 diabetics are insulin dependent, LaFleur said. Most type 1 diabetics develop the disease when they are children. We can help make changes for those who develop type 2 diabetes later in life or those who are considered pre-diabetic, at risk for developing the disease.
People are at risk for type 2 diabetes if they have a genetic predisposition to the disease. Being overweight, age and a lack of exercise can put people at a higher risk.
LaFleur, a registered dietitian, has spent much of her career working with diabetic patients, and with people struggling to lose weight, a condition that can lead to diabetes.In some instances, diet can help people control the amount of medication they might need, LaFleur said. If we can help our patients to control their eating habits, it can make a huge difference in the way they are required to manage their diabetes.
LaFleur said they have also launched an endocrine clinic at PRH.
Our nurse practitioner Pam Larocque specializes in endocrinology, said LaFleur. She has been seeing our patients with diabetes and thyroid conditions to help them manage their medication. As part of that we prescribe a diet for weight loss program.